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Sunday, March 15, 2009

[FL] 2 reporters from the same paper seem to have different takes on the death of Pam Brady

In their article excerpts below, two reporters seem to lean two different ways on the death of Pamela Parker Brady - by bits and pieces of what they chose to mention, not mention, and how things are phrased. Unless someone steps forward with new information, the only thing that will be known is what everyone knows already - that Steve and Pam Brady are gone, and that it was a very very sad ending for everyone left behind.

...[Pamela] Brady, 56, and her husband, Steve Brady, 58, a long-time attorney for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, were found dead Sept. 22... Her brother-in-law, Hal Roberts, told police that family members were sure that Steve Brady killed her...

Previous posts:
Orlando Sentinel
Willoughby Mariano
March 6, 2009
[Excerpts] Pamela Brady, the second-grade teacher found dead beside the body her husband in New Smyrna Beach six months ago, probably suffocated inside a plastic bag, authorities said Friday, but they officially closed their investigation, saying they don't know who killed her. They do know, however, that there was no plastic bag near her body. Brady, 56, and her husband, Steve Brady, 58, a long-time attorney for the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, were found dead Sept. 22. Police quickly determined that he shot himself in the head. The gun was still in his hand. But they spent months trying to determine how Pamela Brady died and who killed her. They may never know. The Volusia County Medical Examiner closed its case file, saying it could not say whether she was the victim of a suicide or homicide. Her brother-in-law, Hal Roberts, told police that family members were sure that Steve Brady killed her, according to a police report... A check of the couple's home computer found that someone had done a Google search for "suicide suffocation plastic bag" three days before the couple's bodies were found, but it was not clear who did the search. More checking on that same computer showed that every piece of information about Internet searches on the account used by Steve had been wiped clean. Police found a suicide note on the couple's dining room table, but no one had signed it. A police spokeswoman said the agency would release it next week. [Full article here]


Orlando Sentinel
By Lyda Longa
March 07, 2009
[Excerpts] ...According to friends who socialized with them often, the couple - who did not have children together - seemed content. But people who worked with Pamela Brady at Crystal Lake Elementary School told detectives their friend's demeanor had "changed dramatically" in the last few days she had been to work before her death. One woman also said Pamela Brady told her she had cashed in her life insurance policy and had received a check for $4,000. On Sept. 19, according to the police report, several events transpired that would show things were starting to unravel for Steven and Pamela Brady. That day, Steven Brady met with his lover over drinks and gave her $6,800 so she could find herself an apartment and pay off some of the bills she would be getting from her divorce proceedings. He also told [XXX] that everything would be all right, the report says. Later that afternoon, Pamela Brady [???] got on her home computer and launched the Google search for "suicide suffocation plastic bag," the report states. About an hour after Pamela Brady did her computer search, she and her husband went to an attorney's office and completed their will, police said. That attorney later told investigators that Steven Brady insisted on getting a copy of the documents the same day. Copies of the will and testament were found on the couple's dinner table along with the mutual suicide note, the police report says. Two plastic bags also were found in a trash can in the house. The bags were analyzed and they contained Pamela Brady's DNA. It's not clear whether Steven Brady killed his wife, then removed the bags from her head or if Pamela Brady killed herself and he removed the bags afterward. Investigators also found several items on the table that showed the Bradys [plural???] had planned their exit and wanted to make sure their affairs were in order, down to the last detail. Among the house and car keys, credit cards and Pamela Brady's school ID and work folders, detectives also found the name of the locksmith who installed the deadbolts at the Brady house. That was in case police came looking for them and the locks were damaged when they broke in. [Full article here]



    81: NSB cops: Certainty that former FDLE attorney killed himself with a gun, but whether he suffocated his wife with a plastic bag remains a mystery
    Posted Fri, 2009-12-25 00:08

    Originally posted Sat, 2009-03-07 01:46

    NEW SMYRNA BEACH -- The police investigation into the killings of a former Florida Department of Law Enforcement attorney and his school teacher-wife found dead Sept. 22, 2008, is now "complete" with evidence showing the husband died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head and the wife as the result of suffocation with a plastic bag.

    How Steven G. Brady, 58, died was determined early on by the Volusia County Medical Examiner's Office. His hsndgun was found in his hand. But what remains unclear is whether the 56-year-old wife, Pamela Brady was murdered by the husband or if she killed herself in the married couple's home at 312 Cedar Ave.

    The Medical Examiner determined she died as a result of suffocation, likely with a plastic bag. But the plastic bag was not on her face or near her body. Instead it was in a trash can elsewhere iin the family's home, according to a police report.

    Among the police report findings after the killings:
    # There were two plastic bags in the trash, one with a tear in it that tested positive for Pamela Brady's DNA, presumably from saliva.

    # Lab technicians did not find fingerprints on either bag.
    # Police discovered someone did a Google search for "suicide suffocation plastic bag" three days before the couple's bodies were found, but investigators could not determine who did that search.

    # A further examination of the home computer revealed all information about Internet searches on the account used by the husband "had been wiped clean."

    # A suicide note was left on the dining room table, but was not signed.

    Even with Friday's developments, New Smyrna Beach police were no closer to announcing her her death as a homicide or suicide and may never be able to make the distinction.

    "The New Smyrna Beach Police Department's investigation relating to the deaths of Steven G. Brady and Pamela P. Brady is complete," New Smyrna Beach police Sgt. Michael Brouillette said Friday. But questions persist.

  2. This is what police said they do know: "The investigation and the autopsy findings provided by the Medical Examiner has revealed that Steven G. Brady's cause of death was a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his head; the manner of death is suicide," said Brouilette, the police department's spokesman. "Pamela Palmer Brady's cause of death was probable plastic bag suffocation; the manner of her death is undetermined."

    The Brady's were found dead in their home at 9:35 a.m., after a "well-being" check, New Smyrna Beach police reported. Police at the time did not rule out the possibility of a murder-suicide, though they did say there is no reason to believe the public safety is at stake, meaning they didn't have evidence showing any outsiders were involved in the killings. Brady abruptly resigned after 23 years on the job after an FDLE investigation into an affair he was allegedly having with a co-worker, Vickie Canter, in the Orlando office.

    According to the police report, three days before the bodies were found, while Pamela Brady was at school, the FDLE colleagues, met for drinks and Brady gave her $6,800. Cantner told police it was so she could leave her husband and get her own place."Ms. Canter stated they were in love and planned to be together in a couple of years, after Mr. Brady paid off his residence," an investigator wrote in the police report.

    But just two hours after Brady and the other woman met for drinks, he and his wife went to the office of a New Smyrna Beach lawyer and signed new identical wills. The couple's home was to be given to an FDLE manager, who as a friend, and money and other personal items to other friends and relatives.
    Things had gotten really ugly a month earlier. On Aug. 14, Douglas Canter and his son returned home from a trip and walked in on his wife and Brady in his Port Orange home.

    The two were sitting on a couch and she was was only wearing a towel. The two husbands argued before Brady put Cantner into a chokehold until he lost consciousness, Cantner wrote in a police complaint and in an application the next day for a restraining order against the FDLE lawyer.

    Canter also accused Brady of trying to strike "me with his vehicle and knocking me to the ground." The report also stated Canter reported Brady screamed nearly a half dozen times that he was going to kill him -- witnessed by Canter's son.

  3. Canter wrote in his request for an order for protection injunction: "(Brady) is a law enforcement officer and carries multiple firearms and is fully capable of carrying out (the) threat." Brady was suspended with pay the next day by FDLE after Cantner's complaint was filed in circuit court in Daytona Beach. That's also when the agency launched its investigation before Brady resigned.

    FDLE has not said whether Vicki Canter was being investigated. She could not be reached for comment.

    Whether Pamela Brady knew her husband was going to leave her or if she had agreed to a suicide pact with her husband are questions that have gone unanswered and may never be known.

    Pamela Brady's brother-in-law, Hal Roberts, told cops that relatives believed her husband had killed her, according to the police reoort. He could not be reached for comment late Friday.

    According to the Orlando Sentinel, Friends who saw the Bradys two nights before their bodies were found said the couple seemed relaxed and normal. Pamela Brady was grading papers from her students at Crystal Lake Elementary School in Lake Mary, Shelly Pestine, a longtime family friend, told the Orlando metro.

    Just hours after the discovery of the bodies and before media reports of the lurid extra-maritl affair, FDLE released a stament, which read in part: "Steve was a respected professional who served FDLE with dedication and a willingness to be of assistance whenever needed. Steve was both well-known and widely-regarded, and was a friend to many within the law enforcement profession. He touched all he knew with his sense of humor. His FDLE family will miss him deeply.”
    Brady spent 23 years at FDLE’s Orlando Regional Operations Center serving as the legal advisor on investigative matters and providing legal training. In addition to his years of criminal justice service, Brady was a Vietnam War veteran, "serving his country with valor," the FDLE statement noted.

    Henry Frederick is editor/publisher of Headline Surfer, Florida's first 24/7 Internet newspaper, launched April 7, 2008 in New Smyrna Beach, and accessed via, & Headline Surfer is a registered trademark of NSB News LLC. Frederick was the top winner in the 2012 Florida Press Club contest: 1st place for Blog Writing & 3rd place each for General News Writing, Public Safety Reporting & Best Online Presence (with social media). He's received 18 major journalism awards as a breaking news, investigative reporter & city editor for daily newspapers in Florida, Massachusetts, New York & Connecticut since the mid-1980s.


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